Governor Ron DeSantis delivered a clear message to potential looters in the aftermath of Hurricane Idalia during a press conference on Thursday. He emphasized that law enforcement in the state will not tolerate anyone taking advantage of the chaos following Hurricane Idalia. DeSantis warned that looters should be aware that they may face grave consequences, as Floridians have the right to defend their property. Referring to the strong support for the Second Amendment in the region, the governor stated, “You loot, we shoot.”
“People have a right to defend their property. This part of Florida, you got a lot of advocates and proponents of the Second Amendment, and I’ve seen signs in different people’s yards in the past after these disasters, and I would say it’s probably here – ‘You loot, we shoot.’”
I’ve told all of our personnel at the state level, you know, you protect people’s property and we are not going to tolerate any looting in the aftermath of a natural disaster,”
“You never know what’s behind that door. If you go break into somebody’s house and you’re trying to loot, these are people that are going to be able to defend themselves and their families. Don’t even think about looting. Don’t even think about taking advantage of people in this vulnerable situation,”
DeSantis made these remarks in response to reports of looting in Steinhatchee, a small town in Taylor County. He expressed his frustration at the audacity of those who would attempt to take advantage of the aftermath of a destructive storm. It is worth noting that this is not the first time the governor has issued such a warning. After Hurricane Ian struck Florida last year, resulting in significant damage and loss of life, DeSantis also delivered a similar message to deter looting in affected areas.
The governor’s commitment to addressing the aftermath of Hurricane Idalia is evident as he has temporarily paused his campaign activities to focus on the state’s recovery efforts. Providing regular updates on the storm’s impact and the government’s response, DeSantis remains committed to ensuring the safety and welfare of Florida’s citizens.